Men, Mental Health, and Tech Meet Ups

With this Sunday being Father’s Day and June being Men’s Mental Health Month, I have been thinking about men and mental health. Often, the discussion about men and mental health focuses on how bad things are – high rates of mental health problems, particularly substance use disorders and suicide – and low

It’s Enough Already

Disruptive. Topsy Turvey. Unprecedented. These have been the go-to adjectives in this era of COVID-19. Nary a Zoom meeting, conversation, or webinar this week escaped reference to challenges of our time. Amidst it all, mental health concerns have been front and center. Here are my go-to qualifiers about mental health

Graduation 2020: Squirm a Little

This week, throughout the United States, amidst the unprecedented pandemic of our day, academic commencements large and small have been taking place, virtually. In my own family – my twins, my daughter-in-law, my nephew, and the husbands of two of my nieces earned the right this year to don mortar

Why a Mask is Not Just a Mask

To mask or not to mask. That has been an evolving question in the throes of COVID-19. Until now, the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organization have advised that ordinary people don’t need to wear masks unless they are sick and coughing. National practices and

Hi Kathy, Stan Here

“Hi Kathy. Stan here. Called to say hello and wish you a good Shabbos. Give me a call when you get a chance. Love you. Bye.” That was the message I could count on every Friday if I was not able to actually talk to my father-in-law when he called

Start of Spring Semester

Columbia University spring semester started this week. How lovely and hopeful that the semester that starts in the dead of winter, is called spring semester. I started teaching the course “Priorities in Global Mental Health” in 2014. In recent years my colleague, Professor Tahilia Rebello has joined me in co-teaching

What Prince Harry is NOT Stepping Back From…

This week started with a circus of tabloid coverage about the Duke and Duchess of Sussex deciding to “step back” from their roles as senior members of the royal family. The week ended with Prince Harry making it eminently clear that one thing he is not stepping back from is

Can You Tell Me How to Get to Sesame Street?

This week, legendary puppeteer Carroll Spinney died at the age of 85. Spinney was the artist who brought Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch to life on Sesame Street for fifty years! Launched in 1969, Jim Henson’s Sesame Street was “a street like no other.” For generations, Sesame Street has

Vaping, Lung Health, and Mental Health

Many times we conflate addiction with the use of illegal substances. In fact, the two substances that have the highest rates of addiction around the world are completely legal – and for some also lethal. We’re talking about alcohol and nicotine. Globally the number of deaths due to smoking declined from 146 per 100,000

International Day of the Girl: Get Out Your Hiking Boots

Today is International Day of the Girl. Yesterday was World Mental Health Day. Maybe it’s not a coincidence that these two days sit side by side on the calendar. In the world of mental health, the data are overwhelmingly clear that gender matters. Gender equality is associated with better public

Mental Health and Climate Change

Last Friday, several members of our Global Mental Health Programs joined an estimated 300,000 people to participate in the Global Climate Strike in Foley Square. One of over 2,500 events held in over 163 countries on all seven continents. Over 4 million people participated in The Global Climate Strikes around

Innovative (Women) Leaders in Global Mental Health

Earlier this month, Forbes Magazine released its list of America’s 100 Most Innovative Leaders. 99 men and 1 woman. Really? Outrageous on so many levels, even after Forbes provided its methodology. So much so, that this week’s Five on Friday breaks form to share with you 100 women who are